Author Topic: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet  (Read 10300 times)

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D4

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Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« on: January 13, 2012, 04:41:08 pm »
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I've heard mixed opinions on this matter.  Currently I am on a diet to try and lose ~7lbs of fat.  Eating slightly less, reduced carbs, eating cleaner, etc...

I have heard that it's good to take one cheat day a week where you can eat whatever and eat a lot to spike your caloric intake so that you prevent your metabolism from slowing down.

Is this true?  

Do you guys recommend having a cheat day or just keep going strong 7 days a week?
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LBSS

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2012, 05:02:01 pm »
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yeah, refeeds are probably a good idea. from an article about AMPk:

Quote from: lyle mcdonald
having a refeed/anabolic phase at some point. You need to turn off diet induced catabolism (explaining why people often lean out after a refeed) and inhibiting it in the brain.
Muscles are nonsensical they have nothing to do with this bullshit.

- Avishek

sunday: long very easy run 80+ mins @ 5:40+ (14+ km)
monday: strength/cross training
tuesday: extensive tempo (7 km) OR fartlek (mostly easy pace with mix of strides, hills, long tempo) 45 mins (8+ km)
wednesday: easy run 60+ mins @ 5:20-5:30 (11+ km)
thursday: easy run 60+ mins @ 5:20-5:30 (11+ km), strength/cross-training
friday: rest
saturday: short tempo 6-8x500 @ sub-4:00 (7 km)

strength would be:
- hops 2x10
- box jumps or ME SVJ 2x5
- squats 3x6-8 or weighted BSS/lunges 3x10/leg
- RDL/hypers 2x10-12 or SLRDL 2x10-12/leg
- upper push myo-reps or sets to technical failure
- upper pull myo-reps or sets to technical failure
- leg raises, holds, pallof presses

TKXII

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2012, 09:20:41 pm »
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WHere is that quote from.

If you want to go on a strict diet it will help, and is a good idea, but a strict diet isn't necessary if you're already pretty overweight and consume a lot of refined sugars/carbs, oils. Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.
"Performance during stretch-shortening cycle exercise is influenced by the visco-elastic properties of the muscle-tendon units. During stretching of an activated muscle, mechanical energy is absorbed in the tendon structures (tendon and aponeurosis) and this energy can subsequently be re-utilized if shortening of the muscle immediately follows the stretching. According to Biscotti (2000), 72% of the elastic energy restitution action comes from tendons, 28% - from contractile elements of muscles.

http://www.verkhoshansky.com/Portals/0/Presentations/Shock%20Method%20Plyometrics.pdf

TheSituation

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2012, 10:19:27 pm »
-2
WHere is that quote from.

If you want to go on a strict diet it will help, and is a good idea, but a strict diet isn't necessary if you're already pretty overweight and consume a lot of refined sugars/carbs, oils. Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.

Calories in, Calories out. Your body doesn't burn fat unless it needs to for energy. Has nothing to do with how "healthy" your foods are.

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TKXII

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2012, 11:08:05 pm »
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Nope.
"healthy" usually means less cals anyway.
"Performance during stretch-shortening cycle exercise is influenced by the visco-elastic properties of the muscle-tendon units. During stretching of an activated muscle, mechanical energy is absorbed in the tendon structures (tendon and aponeurosis) and this energy can subsequently be re-utilized if shortening of the muscle immediately follows the stretching. According to Biscotti (2000), 72% of the elastic energy restitution action comes from tendons, 28% - from contractile elements of muscles.

http://www.verkhoshansky.com/Portals/0/Presentations/Shock%20Method%20Plyometrics.pdf

Raptor

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2012, 08:58:40 am »
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WHere is that quote from.

If you want to go on a strict diet it will help, and is a good idea, but a strict diet isn't necessary if you're already pretty overweight and consume a lot of refined sugars/carbs, oils. Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.

Calories in, Calories out. Your body doesn't burn fat unless it needs to for energy. Has nothing to do with how "healthy" your foods are.



So you're saying what you eat, considering the calories are the same, doesn't matter? What about hormones? Like insulin?

You're basically saying "hey if you eat 2500 kcal of sugar or 2500 kcal of good healthy foods per day will do the same thing for your body fat %, body composition, strength etc"? It's not that easy.

T0ddday

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2012, 07:09:30 pm »
+1
WHere is that quote from.

If you want to go on a strict diet it will help, and is a good idea, but a strict diet isn't necessary if you're already pretty overweight and consume a lot of refined sugars/carbs, oils. Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.

Calories in, Calories out. Your body doesn't burn fat unless it needs to for energy. Has nothing to do with how "healthy" your foods are.



So you're saying what you eat, considering the calories are the same, doesn't matter? What about hormones? Like insulin?

You're basically saying "hey if you eat 2500 kcal of sugar or 2500 kcal of good healthy foods per day will do the same thing for your body fat %, body composition, strength etc"? It's not that easy.

I don't see where he said anything about strength.  The remark was concerning losing fat mass.  Doesn't matter if you eat 2500 kcal of healthy foods if it doesn't create an energy deficit you won't lose weight.

Is calories-in-calories-out 100% correct?  No.  There are many reasons why it's not.  For example the kcals that you read on the back of a package list 4 grams of trans-fatty acids and 9 grams of protein as 36.0 kcals.  In the human body metabolism of those two foods causes the true value of energy expenditure to be different.  But it is a MODEL!   All models are wrong, but some are useful (quoting the great statistician George Box), and calories-in-calories-out is a very useful model.

Concerning fat loss, calories-in-calories-out might be about 1% wrong.  But its still a far better way to go than advice like: "Eat lots of healthy greens and organic grass fed beef and don't worry about calories, your body will lean out cause the food is so healthy."   That advice is 99% wrong.  Take your pick.  

TKXII

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2012, 09:33:19 pm »
-4
We've had this discussion before. There is no clear consensus on this forum. There are a lot of Lyle McDonald nutswingers who believe in calories in - calories out.

What determines fat storage is hormones, not the total caloric intake. Caloric intake has some effect on hormones, this is why long term reduction is a futile strategy. But again consider 1700 calories of a refined junk processed diet, and 2200 calories of pure food containing substances that maintain a healthy metabolism that the former diet does not and creates a hormonal profile that favors fat loss. If you want optimal health, muscle, and a lean physique, which almost everyone on this forum does, you would go with the higher calorie diet.

If you think you need to consciously restrict your calories to lose weight, you are in the Ice Ages. Even if every single instance of fat loss involved a caloric deficit (which it does not), focusing on this strategy is usually futile.

There is NO single instance where the cals in - out strategy of 3500kcal reduction per week resulted in consistent 1lb fat loss. This data does not exist because it is not how the body works (and 1lb of fat does not even contain 3500kcal for that matter). Calories in food are measured in a calorimeter which combusts your food. Your body does not combust food, period.

But yes it is a model. A model that naive consumers are unsuccessfully using to achieve photoshopped physiques on the front of shitty magazines, and destroy their health.

January 14, 2012, 09:33:19 pm - Hidden. Show this post.
"Performance during stretch-shortening cycle exercise is influenced by the visco-elastic properties of the muscle-tendon units. During stretching of an activated muscle, mechanical energy is absorbed in the tendon structures (tendon and aponeurosis) and this energy can subsequently be re-utilized if shortening of the muscle immediately follows the stretching. According to Biscotti (2000), 72% of the elastic energy restitution action comes from tendons, 28% - from contractile elements of muscles.

http://www.verkhoshansky.com/Portals/0/Presentations/Shock%20Method%20Plyometrics.pdf

TheSituation

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2012, 01:59:39 pm »
+2
Energy cannot be created or destroyed. If you don't understand simple physics, you're living in the ice age.

If you eat 3000 calories, and your body uses 3000 calories, you won't store any fat because there's no reason to. If you eat 3500, your body will store the extra, if you eat 2500, your body will need to get the energy from somewhere else. None of that is taking thermal effects into account.


And Raptor, the principle to follow is "If it fits your macros". No one is telling you 2500 calories from sugar will do the same for your body as 2500 calories from lean meat.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2012, 02:03:33 pm by TheSituation »
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[7:31pm] adarq: ripp, being honest, it's hard for u to beat jcsbck, he's on fire lately
[7:31pm] adarq: he's just
[7:31pm] adarq: wrecking people
[7:31pm] adarq: daily




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Dreyth

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2012, 01:53:07 pm »
+2
If you eat 3000 calories, and your body uses 3000 calories, you won't store any fat because there's no reason to.

Hmmm....

Athlete A - Eats exactly 3k cals a day. Burns exactly 3k cals a day. Lifts heavy weights 3x a week.

Athlete B - Eats exactly 3k cals a day. Burns exactly 3k cals a day. Stopped lifting.

3 months pass. Athlete B will have stored fat and lost muscle. Athlete A will have remained about the same (or, if he's a noob, stored muscle and burned some fat.


You are wrong here man. The word weight is not interchangable with the word fat.


YES, you are right in saying you will NOT gain weight if your calories in are equal to calories out.

However, you are wrong in saying you will not gain or lose FAT either.


There is a difference between gaining/losing weight and body recomposition
« Last Edit: January 16, 2012, 01:54:54 pm by Dreyth »
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TheSituation

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 03:49:16 pm »
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1. Athlete A will burn more than Athlete B because he's adding exercise into the equation. Also, because athlete B will lose muscle, he will no longer burn 3000 calories because less muscle = less calories burned. That's why he'd put fat on, because he's now eating over maintenance.
2. Obviously we are talking about weight.
3. You didn't read Avishek's post. That is the one I was responding to. He said "Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.". That's simply not true.
I don't lift for girls, I lift for guys on the internet



[7:31pm] adarq: ripp, being honest, it's hard for u to beat jcsbck, he's on fire lately
[7:31pm] adarq: he's just
[7:31pm] adarq: wrecking people
[7:31pm] adarq: daily




Say NO to Maroko

And also NO to anyone who associates with him. No Taylor Allan. No Adam Scammenauger. No Kelly Baggett. No Elliot Hulse. No Jtrinsey. NO JUMP USA


Don't PM me asking me training questions. I'm here for the lulz. If you want help, post on the forums and get help from all the members, maybe even me.

Dreyth

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2012, 05:52:38 pm »
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1. Athlete A will burn more than Athlete B because he's adding exercise into the equation. Also, because athlete B will lose muscle, he will no longer burn 3000 calories because less muscle = less calories burned. That's why he'd put fat on, because he's now eating over maintenance.

...but that's not the situation we're talking about (they both consume and burn 3000cal a day, period). I already wrote down they they are both on caloric maintenance. You can't change a hypothetical situation and THEN defend yourself against THAT one.  ;)

Quote
2. Obviously we are talking about weight.

Not so obvious when the words can NOT be used interchangeably. ALSO not so obvious when you stated:
"If you eat 3000 calories, and your body uses 3000 calories, you won't store any fat because there's no reason to."
But YES, I do know what you meant now.


Quote
3. You didn't read Avishek's post. That is the one I was responding to. He said "Just reducing those and eating healthier will automatically get you lean.". That's simply not true.

agree
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T0ddday

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2012, 06:02:57 pm »
+2
It's great to spend 5 years of life getting a PhD reading millions of papers and doing actual research and then have people on the internet tell you it's all wrong because they read some website.

The Athlete A/Athlete B example is actually a great question.  If we assume that both athlete A and B had some training experience and had added some lean tissue to their frames, then if conducted perfectly Athlete B would detrain slightly and lose muscle tissue even if he is eating maintenance because he has dropped resistance training.  In this case he will lose lean tissue and his maintenance calories will either no longer be 3k or he will have to drastically increase his exercise (essentially become a marathoner).  If he continues to up his training to make up for the loss of metabolically active tissue then he will actually lose lean tissue but not add fat as time continues.  Eventually athlete B will be lighter but with the same amount of fat as he started with because he has exercised exactly enough to make up for his relatively large energy intake compared to his body size.  

This is certainly a flaw in the calories-in-calories-out model.  It does not take into account the loss of lean tissue that will occur from detraining (for example you will lose muscle and bone in outer space even if you eat well above maintenance).  The model is also flawed when macros are extreme.  For example if someone eats under maintenance but consumes no protein at all, they simply won't rebuild lean tissue and will actually store excess energy (carbs and fats) as fat even though they are technically under their energy expenditure for the day.  Additionally, if someone gorges on protein only and severely restricts fat and carbs they will not store as much fat as would be expected because of the metabolic overhead to convert protein to fat is expensive.

The calories-in-calories-out model certainly seems to be poorest at predicting results for extreme situations.  Still, for normal situations, ie.  You are not beginning  or ceasing a new  resistance training program, you are not protein deficient nor severely restricting fat and carbs, you are not on steroids or in puberty, you are not in outer-space, you have not developed diabetes, etc, THE MODEL WORKS PRETTY DAMN WELL.  Especially on the overweight.

The benchmark study:

http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa0804748

This is a study of over 800 overweight patients on calorie restriction.  

Result: Reduced-calorie diets result in clinically meaningful weight loss regardless of which macronutrients they emphasize.

A study which attempts to show that calories-in != calories out.

http://www.ajcn.org/content/79/5/899S.full?ijkey=f3919ec7617632925bb12e0ffb8deeb08a678686

CONCLUSION

We conclude that a calorie is a calorie. From a purely thermodynamic point of view, this is clear because the human body or, indeed, any living organism cannot create or destroy energy but can only convert energy from one form to another. In comparing energy balance between dietary treatments, however, it must be remembered that the units of dietary energy are metabolizable energy and not gross energy. This is perhaps unfortunate because metabolizable energy is much more difficult to determine than is gross energy, because the Atwater factors used in calculating metabolizable energy are not exact. As such, our food tables are not perfect, and small errors are associated with their use.

In addition, we concede that the substitution of one macronutrient for another has been shown in some studies to have a statistically significant effect on the expenditure half of the energy balance equation. This has been observed most often for high-protein diets. Evidence indicates, however, that the difference in energy expenditure is small and can potentially account for less than one-third of the differences in weight loss that have been reported between high-protein or low-carbohydrate diets and high-carbohydrate or low-fat diets. As such, a calorie is a calorie. Further research is needed to identify the mechanisms that result in greater weight loss with one diet than with another.



Couple anecdotes:

Twinkie diet professor:

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/11/08/twinkie.diet.professor/index.html

Crazy fasting lady:

Fat beginning; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bY9_Qviei7g&feature=list_related&playnext=1&list=SP52CFD735D7B5734E
1 year later (still crazy, much healthier) : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFbvOAbhcT8&feature=relmfu
  

Anyway, this debate REALLY has been put to rest.  In normal cases, if you want to lose weight you simply have to eat less. Different macronutrient ratios will make some differences and you certainly don't want to be protein deficient, but the bottom line is EAT LESS ENERGY (metabolism-wise) and calories are a pretty good approximation of that energy.  

  

T0ddday

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2012, 06:08:20 pm »
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1. Athlete A will burn more than Athlete B because he's adding exercise into the equation. Also, because athlete B will lose muscle, he will no longer burn 3000 calories because less muscle = less calories burned. That's why he'd put fat on, because he's now eating over maintenance.

...but that's not the situation we're talking about (they both consume and burn 3000cal a day, period). I already wrote down they they are both on caloric maintenance. You can't change a hypothetical situation and THEN defend yourself against THAT one.  ;)

Quote
2. Obviously we are talking about weight.

Not so obvious when the words can NOT be used interchangeably. ALSO not so obvious when you stated:
"If you eat 3000 calories, and your body uses 3000 calories, you won't store any fat because there's no reason to."
But YES, I do know what you meant now.


Read my response, actually it makes more sense to talk about fat rather than weight in your example. Your example is an example where an athlete would lose weight (muscle) despite calorie maintenance but actually would not add any fat (provided he kept upping his exercise).  In reality, athlete B would probably end up fatter, but that's only because with much less muscle he has less "wiggle-room".... If he gets injured and rests for a couple days and eats 3k calories he will gain some fat where athlete A might not. 

T0ddday

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Re: Cheat days on a weight/fat loss diet
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2012, 06:13:12 pm »
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But yes it is a model. A model that naive consumers are unsuccessfully using to achieve photoshopped physiques on the front of shitty magazines, and destroy their health.



Strange that you blame the fitness industry on calories-in-calories-out model.  It seems it's a little harder to sell diet advice and supplements when you say "Eat less energy and you lose weight".  I'd actually argue that the fitness industry makes a lot of money by getting overweight people to believe that losing weight is a super complicated process for which they need to buy the latest book, or read the latest article or take the new pill or herbal supplement....